Wildfires in Turkey prompt tourists, villagers to flee beach destinations

Wildfires in Turkey prompt tourists, villagers to flee beach destinations

Wildfires in Turkey prompted tourists and villagers to flee the beach destinations of Antalya and Mugla on Sunday, The Associated Press reported.

The death toll from a fifth day in a row of wildfires in the country rose to eight. The Turkish minister of forestry and agriculture said that the country has dispatched planes, helicopters, fire trucks, and over 1,500 people to help with the fire.

The health minister said that hundreds of people have received hospital treatment as a result of the fire, with 27 people still receiving treatment, the AP reported. 

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Residents of the village of Cokertme fled on boats and vehicles as the fire neared. Officials said they were working to protect two power plants in the area.

Turkey has been experiencing a heatwave as temperatures rose to 107 degrees, which is five degrees higher than the seasonal average. 

Turkish authorities are investigating the cause of the wildfires, suggesting that outlawed Kurdish militants may have started the fires as “sabotage” but experts mostly pointed to the cause being climate change and accidents by people, the AP noted.